Posted at 

February 21, 2018




You need an online marketing strategy to get customers to visit your WooCommerce custom T-shirt store, buy your T-shirts and keep coming back for more.

Once you’ve decided on a T-shirt concept, set up your store and arranged for reliable T-shirt printing and delivery solutions, and have the right product designer plugin to offer your customers, it’s time to communicate with your target market. You probably know that you need to market your custom T-shirts in a way that lets people know you’re out there and that you have an amazing product.

Often custom T-shirt entrepreneurs are stumped about how to go about promoting their online custom T-shirt store business. With so many advertising options available it’s hard to know what will work and what won’t. It’s even harder to know how much to spend and how much time to allocate to your online marketing strategy and promotion.

Here are five tried and tested principles to help you come up with a great online marketing strategy which will attract customers, improve your reach, multiply page views and increase conversion rates.

Keep it simple

This is the rule of thumb when it comes to anything online marketing strategy related. When working with your graphic designers to develop your brand, T-shirt concepts and marketing materials, don’t be overly creative. Keep the concept simple and easy to understand. Busy images tend to be unpopular and test poorly whereas clean designs with three or four key elements work well. Always focus on the product, showing off its features in the best setting. Click here for a great article about showcasing your custom T-shirt store.

Make the most of free advertising

When you’re just getting started, funds are tight and any online marketing strategy expenditure must be justified by sales. It will be important to take advantage of low-cost advertising. Content is one of the best ways to attract customers to your online custom T-shirt store as it will help you improve your site’s search engine ranking organically. In order to rank well on search engines your website will need to have tons of relevant, keyword rich content. Put yourself in your customers shoes and ask “If I was the customer, what will my search query on Google be?” Make a list of the search terms which come to mind.

Keyword research tools, such as those available through Google Analytics will be useful in helping you learn which keywords to target.

There are some great free tools available to help you grow and refine your list of keywords. Google Adwords Keyword Planner helps you identify the right keywords to target and when you’re ready to get creative and broaden your keyword horizons you can try using a tool like AdWord & SEO Keyword Permutation Generator. For related search terms try Google Correlate. This tools allows you to see which terms get searched together.  

Take advantage of social media

It’s also important to provide engaging and shareable content. Don’t hesitate to post images of your products on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook. As your sales increase, try your hand at paid online marketing strategy options such Facebook advertising, AdWords, Pay-per-click and other sponsored ad’s.

It goes without saying that most of your marketing efforts will be online. You might want to boost sales in your vicinity, which would include elements of offline, or traditional marketing such as flyers and billboards but this will come later. It won’t be advisable to spend too much of your marketing budget on these methods in the early days.

Your online marketing strategy options are as varied as they are vast. They begin with branding and go all the way to SEO, SMO and e-mail marketing. To learn more about each of these online marketing categories, we recommend the following articles:

Try, Measure & Tweak

Marketing your online custom T-shirt store will be a process of trial and error. It will be important to see what works and expand on those tactics while cutting back on those that don’t. Analytics tools such as Kapost, Moz and Google Analytics are indispensable in getting a handle on your stats. They will help you get more bang for your buck by providing insights into where your referral traffic is coming from, page views, visitors and what keywords people are searching for. They will also tell you how you rank organically so that you can expand your content marketing efforts meaningfully.

All these stats and analytics can sometimes be intimidating. It’s important to keep in mind that these tools are there to help you understand your target market’s likes and preferences and to uncover new and unexplored marketing opportunities. Tools such as Google Analytics will show you which keywords you rank highest for. E.g. Custom T-Shirt. This information will guide your content marketing strategy and tell what you type of content you need to feature more of in future. Neil Patel wrote a great article incorporating everything an entrepreneur needs to know about SEO while this article on Reports will help you to set up a Google Analytics account and make sense of the reports.

SEO reports tell you how well your marketing efforts and campaigns are doing by showing you where your referral traffic originates. If you have a paid advertising campaign running, it’s good to know how many click throughs you’re getting from that medium vs. organic search and if you’re employing several different online marketing tactics you will need to measure how your target market responds to your efforts by looking for spikes in traffic at certain times and from various sources.

In the early days spend time

If you’re a one-man enterprise – which is probably the case if you’ve just started up your online custom T-shirt store – your key resources are time and funding. It’s hard to know what to spend time on and how to use your available funds. Hold on to your funds in the early days but don’t compromise on giving your customer the best online experience. Ensure that your online custom T-shirt store is interactive and easy to navigate, that products are easy to find, and that you have facilitated a seamless purchasing process. If your do that the operations part of your business will be taken care of and you can spend more time on marketing and promotion.

Be creative

Sometimes the best way to gain momentum is to offer discounts and promotions and there are tons of creative ways to do so. WooCommerce technology allows you to easily facilitate discounts for specific goods and customer groups.Check out the discount plugin for more information.

Having a USP, or unique selling proposition is a marketing fundamental which transitioned from the traditional marketing space to the online environment. It is just as important today to set yourself apart from your competitors by offering a unique product, service or message. Here are a few examples of WooCommerce entrepreneurs who have done this successfully:

You may also find it useful to become familiar with big brand advertising campaigns such as the following and see if they provide inspiration for similar concepts in your own marketing efforts:

  • Marks & Spencer uses intrigue to create hype preceding their 2014 Two Fairies Christmas Campaign.
  • Dr. Marten, the popular shoe brand launched a brilliant social media #standforsomething campaign. In doing so they enhanced their brand proposition and created an association with a phrase that’s catchy, unique and memorable, while
  • Nestle’s Lean Cuisine #WeighThis campaign gets people thinking and talking about the value women tend to place on themselves as individuals.

Applying the above principles will help you develop a successful custom T-shirt online marketing strategy, however, passion, creativity and business savvy will be your greatest assets in marketing your online custom T-shirt store. You will have to have a fair amount grit, i.e. persistence or staying power if you’re going to succeed in the online custom T-shirt game long enough to be profitable.

We will be glad to have a comment from you. Right in the comment box.


  1. Carlos

    Great framework! I totally agree with your approach

    February 21, 2018 at 6:04 pm
    • Grâce Ouendo

      Really? Thanks for reading 🙂

      February 23, 2018 at 9:39 am

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *